Monthly Archives: February 2013

Sudden Death – Part 3 of 4, The Circle of Life

I really thought that last night was going to be my night. I was looking forward to it ALL day. I genuinely believed that besides Angela, the winner of Idol could be in this group of contestants. And I thought that was going to be one of 4 amazing talents that I was completely ready to see (Melinda, Janelle, Candice and Rachel – And whoever the fifth person decides to be. I’m personally undecided on who I want to be 5th. I know Rachel isn’t a shoe in. With Kree in, you can have Rachel AND Janelle go through. They’re just too similar). And all I could think tonight was one thing.

 impress me

Make me pick my favorite! I thought it could be done. I thought with so much talent it would be hard for me to even pick who my favorite was. By the end of the episode it was more like…

are you kidding me

I avoided social media because I started it late and didn’t want to be spoiled, and social media is NOTHING if not a spoiler of reality TV.  And thank god I did, because had I seen who was kept and who went home before I started the episode, I would’ve been angry the entire night. Well, angry longer than I was, because I was angry after the episode was over. Let’s briefly talk about the performances and then I’ll get to my grievances. Who am I kidding, I’m sure I’m going to discuss my grievances while discussing performances. I can’t contain myself.

Melinda Ademi – Nobody’s Perfect

Starting off the night was Melinda. I thought she would be a great way to start the night. She is energetic, she has something that makes you want to watch her perform. Then I realized she was practically committing the worst crime known to Idol. Singing a song that one of the best singers of the group, sang the week before. I think she the producers might’ve done that as a calculated move. Maybe she was thinking, F-yeah, compare me to Angela, I’m gonna show you how much better I am than her. The reason it was a fatal blow? Well, I mean, compare the two –

Yeah, kind of a no brainer. Which was very upsetting. And more upsetting when later on in the evening, they were bringing up past performances and how well people did, and I believe, keeping them because of those performances. I get that and I understand that, but if that was the case, I still think you could’ve kept Melinda over Big Crazy Barb (Fact – I will be saying that line more than once tonight)

Candice Glover – Natural Woman

fabulous

Candice just makes me want to make out with her. I’ll say I can’t wait to hear her sing something up beat like she sang on group night, but singing something that exposes all the nuances of her amazing voice, well there’s nothing wrong with that! Just don’t turn into Pia, Candice. Consider her time on Idol as a warning to try and think out of the box when it comes to song choice, just a little bit. The thing I loved most was Nicki drinking some serious Randy Haterade for not letting her through last season. I supposed JLo and Steven Tyler share that blame though. It’s just more fun to blame Randy and Randy alone. I mean, it was probably his fault.

Juliana Chahayed – Skyscraper

I had no idea who this girl was going into the episode, just that she was the youngest contestant (which immediately had me thinking that we’d be seeing her in a future season and not the remainder of this one). But she brought something that I think no other contestant brought to the show, of any of the top 20 girls – A great song choice and a unique arrangement that WORKED. She certainly sounded NOTHING like the original song. I agreed with Keith that she was definitely struggling with pitch, but the talent was there. And again, agreeing with Keith, I liked the purity and innocence in her voice. I wasn’t familiar with this chick at.all. BUT, I was pleasantly surprised. Unfortunately we won’t be seeing her, but I was prepared for that and her departure was ok with me. But girl was robbed.

Jett Hermano – Only Girl (in the World)

Ah yes, my tiny Asian friend. And she plays piano? Well we know I like that. Unfortunately for her, the performance reminded me of Shubha (if not slightly better) in that it just wasn’t great.  I agreed with Nicki that I wish it would’ve climaxed and it kind of just ended. I was expecting a little more. No harm, no foul, in her departure.

Cristabel Clack – No One

Is it just me or does she seem entirely too young to have 3 children? She looks 18. Cristabel was hovering around my 5th wild card chick, mostly just because I like her attitude. But the song just did not sound good to me tonight. When I looked back to see who else had sung this song because I feel like it’s been done a million times, and I remembered another raspy singer that sang it, and re-listening, clearly did it WAY better than Miss Cristabel, and thy name is Elise Testone.

I agreed with Keith and Nicki, that the raspiness was not quite perfect tonight. I did not agree with Mariah when she started talking about past performances (again). If you’re going to judge one that way, judge all that way! (YES I’M LOOKING AT YOU BIG CRAZY BARB!)

Aubrey Cleland – Sweet Dreams

Ok lets just get the cat out of the bag on this one.

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Ok now that that is out of the way, let’s talk about the talent portion, since this isn’t a Beauty Pageant (RANDY!) I wasn’t too familiar with her performances. That being said, I thought she was great. Her voice was dainty and powerful all at the same time. She was the one, of the people I didn’t know, that you just knew would go through. And it didn’t hurt that 2 judges said they’d hire her on the spot for a record deal (Always nice that a decent voice and a hot body, will pretty much guarantee you at least a 1 record deal). I was with Nicki though, overall. I mean, if you can’t do Bey like Bey can do Bey, then don’t do Bey. Did I say that enough for you? haha. I do still think she was worthy of going through, but I’m going to reserve any kind of “favorite” status until I hear her sing something more pop and less ballad.

Rachel Hale – Nothing But the Water

I knew Rachel was going to have an uphill road with her performance. But I felt like she really climbed that hill and showed how great she is. Her voice is just so right. So right. Except for that last “water”. That was a little rough. I didn’t know this song so I couldn’t really understand Mariah’s criticism but clearly she took the song in a different direction. I just don’t understand how when you have someone that is such a good presence on the stage and “makes a nation want to smile,” that you could even consider sending her home. Even though I practically called her departure before the show started, I was really hoping by the end of the episode, that they were just going to say that they had to keep 11 girls (or that they would admit they made a HUGE mistake by keeping Big Crazy Barb, and had to dump her for Rachel). Alas. Rachel, I either hope you come back, or I hope that you find a career outside of Idol because I do believe you belong on a stage somewhere!

Breanna Steer – Bust Your Windows

I felt like I was waiting for her voice to crack or something. Maybe it wasn’t powerful enough? The last note hit it thought. I’ll give her that. She made me want to see more of her, that’s for sure. Not my favorite but worthy of a Top 10 spot, I suppose. Also Keith, how can you have never heard that song? The songs he admits to not knowing amaze me. His comments make up for it though “I love that song, despite it’s violent nature.”

Janelle Arthur – Just a Kiss

I wanted to like Janelle. I did like her prior to this evening. And if you take the whole of her performances, she’s most certainly Top 5. And in that regard, I do think she deserved the Top 10 spot. But, also in that regard, god I thought that performance was atrocious, and my money was REALLY on Rachel getting the spot, once both had performed. I just thought that particular performance was possibly one of the worst of the evening. I blame it mostly on song choice. I see her more as a Reba/Trisha Yearwood voice, than a Lady Antebellum/Dixie Chicks voice. Michael Slezak brought up a good point talking about how her small stage performances far outweigh her big crowd performances, possibly spelling her demise earlier than one might expect.  I just think she was more on a downward spiral where Rachel seemed to just get better over the last few weeks.

Zoanette “Big Crazy Barb” Johnson – Circle of Life

By far the most polarizing performance of the night. When I went back and looked at twitter to see what everyone thought, there were as many “that was terrible” as there were “Zoanette gives me LIFE”. My husband was watching Idol with me tonight for the first time this season (since he forced me to go to Kohl’s with him thereby forcing me to watch Idol late, on the DVR) and he couldn’t bevieve this chick was even on the show. I personally was wondering, was this Big Crazy Barb, or was this Rafiki (stage Rafiki, obvs)?

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There’s  a similarity, no? Anyway, lets get back to the polarization. I think I’m on the side of terrible. And like Tenna, I think the only reason they kept her is because she’ll give the “Vote for the Worst” people someone to root for, and she is a performer if nothing else. In fact, I think she’d do great as the part of Rafiki on Broadway, so maybe do that, instead? The main reason it pains me to see her go through is because I just cannot forgive the BUTCHERING of the National Anthem, from her audition. I don’t understand how she made it through that round, let alone to the Top 20. It baffles the mind and just leads me to this type of situation…

drinking

 

Overall I wouldn’t say I completely disagree with the Top 5 they chose, but I do believe they should’ve axed Big Crazy Barb and kept either Melinda or Rachel. I mean, Melinda would give you a performance akin to Zoanette (albeit slightly more toned down because it’s impossible to bring the crazy like Zoanette), and Rachel just did SO well tonight, I really thought she deserved an in. Here’s hoping one of them has a conviction record we aren’t aware of and Rachel can come in a few episodes in. A girl can dream.

So with all that said, I suppose we move onward and upward to see who the last 5 of the Top 20. Here’s hoping that the boys tomorrow perform as I want them to and the right 5 make it to the the Top 20. And in Idol fashion, I’ll settle for the right 3 (I’m looking at you Nate, Lazaro and Mathenee).

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Sudden Death, Part 2 of 4

Small confession, I really only half watched the episode since my oldest best friend (who also happens to watch Idol) came in to town and we have a rough time shutting up and just watching TV when we haven’t been face to face for almost a year. Also, we were playing with my phnephew.

Meet Aidan, my phnephew

Meet Aidan, my phnephew

He likes Idol too, but he was coming off a pretty long car trip and was beginning his love affair with my puppies, so his attention was limited except for when Disney commercials came on. His commentary, also included, though limited.

Ok so before we talk about any of the boys tonight (that aren’t named Aidan), can we just talk about a man named Jimmy?

jimmy-iovine-crop

He’s seriously my favorite person on this show. I know I’ve said it 100 times, but it’s like, no matter if  you have a thing for a certain singer or not, you know he’s always right. Always. I think the only reason he’s not a judge is because he’s just too good. And he’s a great mentor.

The guy just oozes talent.  Now lets talk about some other people that ooze talent, shall we? Since I did it with the girls, I decided to keep it the same and sort the contestants from favorite to least favorite.

Charlie Askew “Rocket Man”

Your weirdness, your awkwardness, it excites me. I’m 100% bias. I know my infatuation with you will probably be short lived since you aren’t the best singer and probably won’t be on the show too long, but I’ll embrace you while I can. I know, Randy was probably right (insert me killing myself here), in that my biggest pet peeve of the show is when people talk about how great a performance is when the singing is horrible, but in this particular case, I just have to eat my own words. Because, to quote phnephew, Randy is the worst. And because I love Charlie, and awkward turtles, and everything else.  I’m so happy he at least goes to the live fan vote. I really thought they would wait and make him go last so when he went 3rd with 2 spots left and I knew he was safe, all was right with the world! Thank you Nicki for being such a convincing! I’m sure you had a lot to do with it.

Finchy “Superstar”

Ugh. Seriously, I just hate this guy. Yes, his voice is good. Yes, he was probably the best voal of the night, but he has a Jacob Lusk face problem and I just don’t think he’s genuine. At least Joshua seemed genuine. I’ll never claim to have liked Jacob. I see Finchy and I just think…

moody_child_ODD

I can only hope his bad/fake attitude is enough to get him off the show. He certainly can’t be gaining any fans, right?

Devin Velez “Listen”

I remembered this kid from group night but not really his voice, just his face. That being said, I thought he was a really great singer. His sweater was a touch on the Mr. Rogers side, and upon googling, I think cardigans are just kind of his thing…

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but everything Finchy lacks in sincerity, Devin seems to have it in spades. I could definitely see him going far. Had I seen him prior to tonight, he probably would’ve made my Top 5 off the bat.

Kevin Harris “(Everything I Do) I Do it For You”

Ok I immediately liked Kevin. I know it was mostly the song choice but  his look and voice as well. He was the only person I was upset with, about leaving. And to be honest, I was agreeing with Randy most of the night (as much as it shames me to say it), but not at ALL when it came to Kevin.

Paul Jolley  “Tonight I Wanna Cry”

I didn’t realize that this was a Keith Urban song, and I was worried immediately, that this was going to be another slow night. That being said, when a slow song is done well, it’s far less boring, and I thought Jimmy made the right choice by allowing Paul to stay. I really think the tie was between Paul and Johnny Keyser, so I’m really glad Jimmy got to pick, and chose Paul. I think had Paul not been safe, Johnny would’ve been. Barf. God he’s the worst.

I had a hard time sorting through my bottom 5, but I think it was safe to say who my least favorite was, so I was super pissed when somehow he was magically safe. I mean, seriously? Seriously? If I have to take Elijah to keep Charlie, I’ll deal.

Johnny Keyser  “I Won’t Give Up”

I hate this guy. Yes, he’s a good singer, he just creeps me out. He has rapist eyes (just google it). And I was very happy to agree with Randy on his one! Way to agree that he’s not good! Now I may start to like you. #thatsalie

ByeBitchSnowWhite

Jimmy Smith “Raining On Sunday”

I honestly didn’t really hear this surfer country guy sing but he wasn’t doing anything for me. No harm no foul.

J’DA – “Rumor Has It”

Ok let me just say something abour J’DA. I don’t like him, his voice isn’t anything amazing and his performance was more like a “routine” in that it seemed very planned out down to the facial expressions. BUT, I liked that at least he put effort into it, it was far more exciting than anything we’ve seen the last two nights (except for a few select moments) but I mean at least it wasn’t dull.

I didn’t like those pants at all.  Or the weird back of his shirt, or the sweaty glitter.

Chris “Sooo Not the Turbinator” Watson “Sitting on the Dock of the Bay”

This look was like an ice skaters outfit. I think his downfall was his outfit. And maybe the song choice. Definitely could’ve been a LOT better. I feel like this was the first time I heard him sing but it didn’t do anything for me either.

Elijah Liu “Talking to the Moon”

Ok so seriously, how did people think it was good? It was like a bad Michael Jackson look, a bad Michael Jackson voice, and had he actually sang a Michael Jackson song, I might’ve been into it, but I wasn’t. I guess it was a bit of a Bruno Mars look to some extent, but maybe the fact that he didn’t totally pull it off, made me think Michael. I loved when my pal Michael Slezak said “And when I have to type the words “Randy made sense” (in that order), it’s time to wrap up the paragraph and consider a pint glass full of gin.” In this case it seems Randys opinion lost out.

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I think it’s safe to say that clearly the producers are keeping some of the favorites for next week. I think only 2 of my Top 10 (and 2 more if you include my Top 12) performed this week. Next week is sure to be thrilling People I’m most excited about seeing HAVE to be Gupreet and Melinda because I think they’ll at least have exciting performances.

Bring on next week!

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Sudden Death, Part 1 of 4

So in the theme of Season 12, there was an all new feature. Sudden Death. It’s my favorite thing when it comes to sports, so how could it be bad in Idol? Well, first and foremost, it wasn’t really sudden death. Let’s clarify what sudden death is…

 suddendeathsports

I realize that’s the sports definition, but compared to the medical definition… or so I thought…

sudden death medical

Maybe the medical definition was a touch more accurate. I say that because I don’t really believe any of these contestants were “tied” when it came to talent. It was actually very simple for me to pick the top 5 performances of the night. That’s not to say the judges agreed with me, but it wasn’t hard to decide.  I guess when I heard sudden death, I was thinking more along the lines of, two contestants sing and then one is picked. Rather than all 10 performing and then picking 5. I mean, this is produced so that could easily have been done. Oh well.

I say that it was more like the medical definition because within an hour of discovering who some of these girls were, they had already faced their death in the competition (I’m looking at you Jenny Beth and Kamaria).

There were things that I liked about tonights episode. I liked that we would definitively know which 5 would go by nights end (even though it would take what seemed like an exhaustingly long 2 hours), the celebrity doppelgangers, how Mariah had a way of critiquing all of Randy’s critiques, that some of the contestants I hadn’t heard of, performed really well (Adriana and Amber),and that the one and only Jackée Harry, was live tweeting it! And she was pretty spot on (you can see her review at the bottom of the page!

Now, the worst part? Well, obviously there was the part about it being 2 hours. There were the incredibly BORING song choices. God were they boring. And finally there were the outfits/styling, which in general are always terrible so I’ll forget that little nugget. Oh, and there was that part where Tenna made it through and Brandy Hotard didn’t. I have a theory about that though.

I’ve put the performances in order of how much I liked them.

Angela Miller “Nobody’s Perfect”

By far my favorite performance of the night. And me thinks Ang is a fan of the one and only Jessie J. It did make me sad when I heard the piano, but then looked up from my computer and realized she wasn’t playing it. I guess she can’t have that same “original song” performance every week, which obviously stuck with the judges – which was actually pretty bothersome to me. The judges didn’t take into consideration anyone elses past performances, so why focus so heavily on hers? It’s not like she needed more praise than she got last week. But I digress. This girl could win for so many reasons. She really is a complete package, and that package is named Miley Cyrus (aka – Angies celebrity doppelganger).

angiedoppel

Kree Harrison “Up to the Mountain (MLK Song)”

While I believe Ang had the performance of the night, Kree had the vocals of the night. I still think MamaSox has the ultimate version of this song but Kree gave her a run for her money. I think MamaSox only wins because she also played the guitar. My only thing with her overall performance, and really I wouldn’t even call it a thing because as long as you can sing your styling shouldn’t matter… but… it does. I thought her styling seemed… like it lacked effort? I feel bad saying that because it’s a COMPLETE double standard. When Phillip Phillips wore a grey shirt the entire season, I kind of liked the shtick. So why I feel like Kree should have to be styled well, I’m working on it. I know you’re in there somewhere feminism.
Celebrity Doppelganger: the girl who played the good step-sister in Ever After (Melanie Lynskey)

 kreedoppel

Amber Holcomb “My Funny Valentine”

Of the unknown contestants I thought Ambers was most definitely the best. I thought she looked familiar, then I realized the younger her, has tried out before (she lost out to Shannon Magrane in group night – seriously who was picking the contestants then? ugh). I liked her a lot and she handled the version of that song very well, but I didn’t like that version of the song AT ALL. I do think she did a wonderful job, just didn’t like the version of the song. I just know it as the version Frank Sinatra sings, and it’s not my favorite song when he sang it either. I do have to mention that a lot of people thought Melinda Doolittle did this song way better. I didn’t remember that performance but I’ll take twitters word for it.

 Adriana Latonio “ Ain’t No Way”

adrianna

Another new girl, the Alaskan (I have a thing for Alaskans). Now, was it just me or was this girl just straight up Jessica Sanchez, Redux? The dress and look (and voice) is very Jessica Sanchez. I mean, take a look…  Idol doppelganger says what?

 adrianadoppel

Anyway, as far as performance, it was definitely the best performance of the first 3, but since we’re comparing her to Jessica, I think it’s safe to say she’ll never win. Safely in the Top 20, sure. Winner? Not so much.I  think Nicki pinged on what Jenny Beth didn’t have (besides the voice) that Adriana oozes, when she said she didn’t see an ounce of fear in Adriana. And you know why that is? Alaskans be CRAZY! Seriously. Go to YouTube and search “Crazy Alaskans” if you’re looking for something to do with your afternoon.

 Isabelle  “God Bless This Child”

Rounding out my Top 5 performances was difficult. I could decide between Brandy/Shubha/Isabelle. I went with Isabelle because well… honestly I don’t know. I just felt like she’d beat out the other two. I think Keith won me over with his comment of, “Let that performance be the key to the side of his car.” I’m sorry you didn’t make it but let me give you a little piece of advice, if you’re going to go by one name, don’t use Isabelle.

Celebrity Doppelganger: Any of the Real Housewives that is also blonde. Preferably from the OC Cast. Except she can sing.

So I wasn’t completely off about my Top 5, and really I wasn’t sure Isabelle would make it into the Top 5. I  sure as hell wasn’t thinking she’d be replaced by Tenna. Ugh. UGHHHH!!! I’m 1 for 1 with my Top 5 overall girls though, and I’ll take that! Now I just have to hope that the other 4 have some solid performances next week! As for the bottom, they’re in order of favorite to least favorite as well.

 

Brandy Hotard “Anymore”

I was happy to see her performance because she was the first of the night that I liked and want to succeed! I did agree with Nicki that it was a bit of a pageant performance, but that being said, look at her, I want to see her smile. I don’t want to see her sad and pathetic.I guess I’ll just say it was the wrong song choice. It would’ve been better seeing her sing something with some more pep.
Celebrity Doppelganger: Some chick from the Bachelor (which I’ve never seen an episode of but I can agree the resemblance is uncanny) To me she’s more Katie Holmes meets Jennifer Tilly.

brandydoppel

Shubha Vedula “Born This Way”

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While we hadn’t seen her a lot, she was totally one of my faves from the audition rounds! I had really high hopes for her. If nothing else the judges could’ve at least given her some credit for a somewhat more unique song choice and an original, not totally boring arrangement. My problem with the performance, besides it being a touch all over the place, was that it was just so slow. I liked the passion she had but could it have killed her to speed it up just a little bit? I was hoping that the piano was just her starting slow and then it would speed up and get fun, but unfortunately that wasn’t the case.

Tenna Torres “Soulmate”

Tenna

Best tweet of the night. And probably how she should’ve placed in order of the 10 performances of the night. I have to words for why Tenna made it into the Top 5. Camp Mariah. Mariah gave me a hint when she was talking to Kree (I think it was Kree) about how she didn’t like her but whatever, she was through. I think Mariah used Kree as her leverage to say, if you’re going to make me pick Kree, I want my Camp Mariah girl. I suppose I can deal with that. I mean, someone needs to be voted off first. And whoever the stylist is for the night – what’s with the Toddlers & Tiaras hair and make-up? At least Nicki is acknowledging that the hair is atrosh.

Kamaria Ousley “Mr. Know it All” 

I literally have nothing nice to say about this performance. She would’ve been last place but I figured out that Kamaria was the girl from the Candice Glover group on group night, and that was a great performance, so at least I know she had one good moment at some point.

Jenny Beth Willis “Heaven, Heartache and the Power of Love”

Easily tied for the worst of the night. She seemed really flat, to me. Her lacked passion and wreaked of nerves.  She’s no Kelly Clarkson, that’s all I’m saying. I have a feeling that by tomorrow I will have already forgotten her.

 

And finally, in case you were wondering what Jackée Harry’s thoughts were, and I mean, really, who wasn’t – here it is!

Screen shot 2013-02-20 at 9.36.48 PM

 

 

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Meet the Top 20 Guys

Top5guys

So, picking the Top 5 guys was WAY harder than picking the Top 5 girls. Not because there were so many it was hard to narrow it down, more because it was hard for me to pick 5 because after the top 5, they all kind of blended together for me. I remember hot ones (Josh Holiday, Paul Jolley), I remember ones that were dicks but had good voices (Finchy), and there were people I hated from last season and still don’t know how they were even allowed back to compete (Yes, Johnny Keyser, I’m looking at you). Luckily, my Top 5, were very easy to pick! Whether they make it to the live shows is debatable, but they’re my Top 5 and I wouldn’t trade them.

Ok so lets talk about the guys.

Lazaro Arbos (21, Naples, FL)

Ok so first and foremost, a lot of these contestants already have a growing fanbase, but I think Lazaros take the cake. They call themselves #Lazis and I think they’re one of the keys to him making it in the live shows, because he’s going to be on the live shows. Other things he has going for him? Well, he can rock a bowtie, he’s very handsome, and he does have the sympathy vote. I know it’s not something I like to focus on but it’s hard to not feel for his story. I’m a heart-hardened person when it comes to sob stories on the show and he’s one of the few that got to me. He also has some famous friends – aka, Jessica Sanchez!

lazarojessica

I don’t know how they know each other but it can’t hurt to know someone who knows the system! Through twitter you can tell a lot of past Idol contestants have favorites every season but I feel like it’s rare that they would actually know each other (how well they know each other isn’t something I know, but they’ve at least met twice. haha).

Charlie Askew (17, Little Rock, AR)

Oh you sassy ging! Now, I don’t have the same certainty that I have with Lazaro, but I think that the fan girls that wouldn’t be into Lazaro, would be into Charlie. They both kind of have the outcast vote, but Lazaro is also hot, so he has that working for him, where Charlie has to hold onto his weirdness, which I don’t think will be hard for him. And while he may not be friends with Jessica Sanchez, he has a fan in another Idol contestant…

charlie-durbin

Now, you may ask why I personally love Charlie? He’s sassy. By reading his recently created fan blog I discovered that he plays the drums, guitar, piano and bass. I love a musician that’s ALSO a singer! But, the most importantly, and how this escaped my knowledge is beyond me – he’s in a barbershop quartet. Um, what? Did he mention that and I just completely missed it???

The Four Reps outside

Still don’t believe me?

Yeah.

Nick Boddington (27, Memphis, TN)

If I don’t look at Nick, I really like him. He kind of creeps me out. His eyes are piercing in like, the wrong way. And he’s bald-ish, which I’m not a fan of. Although he does look better bald, than with hair. Luckily for him (and me), his voice is wonderful. I’ve liked him since last season and was mad when he got cut then, so obvs, I hope he makes it through this year. Check out his lovely cover of Jeff Buckley’s Grace, on youtube. Oh also found on youtube, he sang with Janelle Arthur for the troops in Kuwait!

 

Can we just talk about this “Icons World Tour” for a second? It’s like a who’s who of people who didn’t make it on Idol. I feel like I recognize 90% of those names! Man, Jen Hirsh, come back into my life!

Mathenee Treco (26, Aurora, CO)

Much like Nick, I wanted Mathenee to make it through last season, and honestly, I think if I had to choose between Nick and Mathenee, it would be Mathenee for me. Reasons I love him?

1. He played Frankenfuter in Rocky Horror, and rocked the lingerie.

2. He’s a self starter and a kick-starter!

3. Um… have you seen him? I can’t decide if he’s a hot contestant, or the hottest contestant.

Please go far, Mathenee!! I still want a girl to win, but you can be in the Top 4 or something. Thanks.

Gurpreet Singh (22, Potomac, MD)

Ok so I know this guy has a long climb to make it into the Top 12. BUT. I mean, come on. The Turbinator. Need I say more? Ok I will. He has a sick Turban, he plays the guitar, I’m already following him on twitter, and he has a fan in Casey Abrams. And yes, he does have #BeardSwag

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Oh, and he has a cover of one of my favorite John Legend songs! (It starts around the 2 minute mark)

 

If I were to pick a 6th, it would be based on hotness, and not voice, so I didn’t think it was fair to pick a 6th guy. In lieu of that, I’ll just say, Josh Holiday and Paul Jolley, you are hot. Really, really hot.

Burnell Taylor (19, New Orleans, LA) – Ok, he’d probably be my 6th.
Curtis Finch Jr. (24, St. Louis, MO) – I just don’t like you, or your attitude. But, you have a great voice, so congratulations on that.
Johnny Keyser (24, Pompano Beach, FL) – I don’t like you either, but I don’t think you’re a dick.
Kevin Harris (28, Montgomery, AL) – I don’t know who this is but I like his dreads.
Josh Holiday (24, Celeste, TX) – Hot Boy, baby you got what I need!
J’DA (27, Chicago, IL) – I’ve seen this guy and his unique outfit choices but I haven’t really heard him sing so I’ll give him a chance until then.
Paul Jolley (22, Palmersville, TN) – Another hottie bo bottie.
Vincent Powell (29, Austin, TX) – Unless a second guy also named Vincent Powell auditioned for Idol, this guy has gone through a serious weight loss. Good on ya! Good luck!
Cortez Shaw (21, Dallas, TX) – Really like this kid. Could’ve been a 7th. Sups cute, I think he also tried out last year. He sang Rihanna in his audition.
Jimmy Smith (25, Waynesboro, TN) – I like to call him “The guy with the ugly hair”. The REALLY ugly hair.

Bryant Tadeo
(23, Hilo, HI) – I love a Hawaiian contestant! I don’t know who you are though. Or who the rest of these guys are, but good luck to all of them!
Chris Watson (25, Fords, NJ)
David Willis (21, Mount Dora, FL)
Elijah Liu

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Meet your Top 20 Girls

Top5girls

There they are! My personal Top 5 girls. They were entirely easier to pick that the boys so I think that bodes well for them. I hope so anyway. Let’s meet them a little more in depth than we have so far, shall we? After all, there are winners to be picked before you know it! I’ve placed them in order of my favorites, relatively speaking.

Melinda Ademi (19, Yonkers, NY)

Obviously we know she tried out before and was cut before the live shows (I forgot about her whole Kosovo childhood) started but I definitely think she’s a contender for the Top 12 (or whatever number the live shows start at) – If you check out her youtube page, she’s got a pretty good version of Moves Like Jagger. Better than her Adele and Beyoncé covers.

Angela Miller (18, Beverly, MA)

She’s got a lot of piano on her youtube page and first checked out Falling Slowly. She’s a little chorus-y, and there’s a reason her brother isn’t on Idol, but then I found this Bonnie Raitt cover and I remembered why I like her so much. Not to mention she has some pretty hilarious faces that she makes while she’s singing. I didn’t notice it until I had to pause a few times while watching some of her songs. It’s pretty comical, I’m assuming not purposefully though.

Janelle Arthur (23, Oliver Springs, TN)

Janelle doesn’t have a youtube page, but she is apparently an organization. That’s a girl that’s got her stuff together, and if this is your third golden ticket, I guess that’s understandable. They even have the answer to “Who is Janelle Arthur?” in case you were wondering. I know I was.

Rachel Hale (21, Prescott, AR)

So, unlike Janelle.org, Rachel is the Real.Com. And since I’ve never heard of a song called “Football is King” I’m going to assume she performs original music. Also, I had to bring this up because it cracked me up. Ok, so remember when Phillip Phillips auditioned and I googled “panty melter” and a bunch of grey shirts came up, well when you google “Rachel Hale”, you get this:

RachelHaleGoogle

Yes folks, that’s a bunch of pink kitten and puppy pictures. I think it’s appropriate though, no? I mean, she’s as adorable as a little puppy dog. Apparently there’s also a Rachel Hale in the UK that designs things for animal lovers. Good to know.

Candice Glover (23, St. Helena Island, SC)

She’s an interesting follow on twitter. I mean, how can I dislike someone who has a montage of Kim Kardashian crying?  I want to like her but she’s just not my favorite. I have a feeling she’ll be in the Top 12 though, so here she is.

So, those are my Top 5 girls.

Now, since they usually go out to a Top 12, I wanted to actually pick 6 girls, but I couldn’t decide who I’d pick for my 6th, so you got a top 5 and now a list of my two alternates for the 6th spot. I’d be happy if either of these girls made it through.

Brandy Hotard (26, Port Allen, LA)

Not a big online presence at all, and I couldn’t find a twitter page (she has FB but obviously it’s private). I did find this awesome pageant picture though. So at least she’s already won at something! Unfortunately that just makes me think she’ll be a less good Pia Toscano, singing ballads and wearing gowns if she makes it to the Top 12, not that I’m completely opposed to that.

BrandyHotard

Shubha Vedula (17, Mt. Pleasant, MI)

Well she has a twitter but it seems it may’ve just been created at the start of American Idol. Nothing wrong with that – everyone has to start somewhere. She’s my final quasi-hopeful for the Top 12. I’m not sure if I like her yet because we really only saw her audition and then like, another 30 seconds worth throughout the episodes that followed. I think I do like her though. She seems fun and unique.

The rest of the list of girls looks like this.

Juliana Chahayed (15, Woodland Hills, CA) – the youngest contestant. We’ve only seen about 5 seconds of this girl.
Cristabel Clack (29, San Antonio, TX) – the one with the coolest hair. She was the worship leader and has some great videos on her twitter page.
Aubrey Cleland (19, West Linn, OR) – She was in Shubha’s group on group night but that’s all I know about her. Here’s her youtube page if you wanna get a feel for how she sings.
Kree Harrison (22, Nashville, TN) – I think we all know who she is from the solo auditions.
Jett Hermano (25, Seattle, WA) – My tiny Asian girl! How is she 25? Check out her Ne-Yo cover. Also, maybe she’s not Asian? But she is tiny!
Isabelle Pasqualone (22, Duluth, GA) – formerly Christine. She doesn’t have her last name on the show, but that’s what google is for.
Big Crazy Barb (20, Tulsa, OK) – aka Zoanette Johnson
Tenna Torres (28, Queens, NY) – Camp Mariah girl
Amber Holcomb (18, Houston, TX) – I have no idea who this girl is (or the girls listed after her)
Adriana Latonio (17, Anchorage, AK)
Kamaria Ousley (29, Oakland, CA)
Breanna Steer (18, Laplace, LA)
Jenny Beth Willis (17, Owensboro, KY)

Categories: American Idol, Television | Leave a comment

American Idol – A Day to Fall in Love

It was fitting that Idol would choose to air their last night of Hollywood week on Valentine’s day, because it gave me a chance to fall in love all over again. To remind me that occasionally the show actually IS about the contestants, and finding that one that you really LOVE! It’s interesting how they started the first three girls with completely different styles but still amazingly stunning voices. THIS is how you find the next American Idol. This is how you remind American how amazing the girls can be! I almost felt like I was watching the finale, just in the first 3 auditions.

Who knew there was so much creativity oozing out of the contestants tonight. Three original songs (some better than others), tons of amazing performances (for many reasons, all uniquely their own)… so lets get started!

I liked that of the seeming front runners of the show, that we’ve actually seen multiple performances of theirs. Angela is the only one we didn’t see in auditions and that’s a nice feeling, to be at the final part of Hollywood week and not going – now who is that person? I’m not saying that didn’t happen, but at least it didn’t happen with the best singers of the night.

Angela Miller – You Set Me Free – And you DO Angela! You set me free! You give me life! How are you only 18 years old? And you play the piano? Damn girl!  You’ll recall she was the one with hearing problems which she mentioned right off the bat, and honestly she was barely one of my favorites after her audition. I don’t think she really stood out until her group night performance. And even then I mean,  you could tell her voice was good but still, she didn’t stand out as much as her other group member Janelle. But today… I just have one question for you, because I am in love.

Angela-Miller-You-Set-Me-Free-American-Idol-12-Hollywood-Week-Solo

Was this really only the first solo audition? I almost wish it was the last one I’d seen! I could’ve easily ended the night right there. Side note though – was this song about Jesus? Ugh. Not another Colton Dixon, PLEASE! I don’t think she will be though.

Candice Glover – Girl is on Fire – Um, yeah, the girls are on fire! Wowza. If anyone was going to follow Angela up, I think Candice was quite the choice (and sorry I kept spelling your name Candace. M’bad). I didn’t expect anything less from Candice and I think with her losing at the end of Vegas last year, she just has that much more drive to make it to the live stage, and based on her last 3 solo performances, I don’t see how she won’t.

Janelle Arthur – I Told You So – Janelle. Janelle. Janelle. Janelle. Janelle. Word. The only thing that bothered me about Janelle, was that this wasn’t Rachel performing (and would foreshadow a possible fate of the ever chipper, Rachel Hale). Janelle didn’t stand out to me until group night but you could just tell on group night that this girl was going to go far in this competition and I assume, pending any epic disasters in Vegas, we’ll be seeing her on the live stage.

Big Crazy Barb – Original Song that I’m not going to attempt to spell – Little did Nicki know (or maybe she knew all too well) how foreboding the nickname of “Big Crazy Barb” would be. I had so many mixed feelings about this performance. None of them being that she’s a good singer and deserves to go through for that reason. I mean, she does suck, right? I’m not the crazy one here. Yeah, she’s definitely a character. To make up a song literally as you’re performing, to sit down at the drums? To be perfectly honest, it’s like she has the crazy of of Whitney, Tina, and um that weird lady that sang with Jessica Sanchez in the final of last season whose name escapes me… JENNIFER HOLLIDAY! YES, that was the crazy person…

Jennifer Holliday-Jessica Sanchez2

I never realized how scared Jessica Sanchez looked…

anyway, if you combined all those people at their craziest, that would be Big Crazy Barb…. but I can’t deny, I’m drawn the the crazy y’all. HOWEVER  that’s NOT to say I think she should’ve gone through. I think I need to take a little page out of Michael Slezaks review when he said: Mariah was way too generous when she said “people will be looking at this performance for years to come” — unless by “people” she meant “Zoanette” and by “looking at” she meant “repeatedly playing on YouTube during breaks from her inevitable desk job.”

So then, they judged the group (but was that even necessary, obviously they’d all be through). Glad to see the tiny Asian (Jett, you say?) I liked was through too, even though I feel like we’ve heard her sing about .5 seconds.

Shubha Vedula – When You Believe – It’s kind of amazing to just hear awesome after awesome after awesome tonight (with some side shows thrown in). Twenty minutes in and we’ve yet to see a non-entertaining performance. Not a great song choice but probably not the worst either. And she’s so pretty!

Juliana Chahayed (sp?) – Landslide – She was good from what little I heard of it. Not exactly critique worthy but I guess we’ll see more of her in Hollywood?

Melinda Ademi – Pricetag – Can I just say that I straight up LOVE this girl? She just seems so much fun. Her voice, her style, I just like it all. I could see her on Glee. I could see her rocking out on Idol. Maybe it’s also that I love this song, but she did sing it well and I really just straight up enjoy her. If Angela backs out as my Valentine, I’d want it to be Melinda. And honestly, Melinda seems like the better person when it comes to picking song choice. I wonder what she auditioned with because I don’t remember seeing her in the auditions, but they did show her audition from last season.

Kree Harrison – Stars – For your deceased parents, ey? I’m hoping that she makes it just because it’s not typical to see the sob story this far into the show, only to not have you be on the show. Why the sob story was necessary I’m not sure, because her voice held its own. I was a little worried for her when Keith said he had to fight for you… does he have that argumentative power that Nicki clearly has? I guess so, because she made it through! Good deal. I was pretty sure she would.

Rachel Hale – Undone (a Haley Reinhart song, folks) – So it came down to Rachel Hale vs. Stephanie Shimel (singing Phillip Phillips, no less)? How this was even an option of competitor was a little beyond me. I still remember Nicki saying she just didn’t see Stephanie as a star, and in group night even Stephanie herself was perplexed as to how she was safe. And to compete against Rachel who we never saw a bad performance be? But hearing Rachels performance from the solos that was conveniently left out until this moment, it definitely wasn’t up to par with what it had been. I guess at least they’re giving her a second choice. I think you just have to give it to Rachel based solely on past performances. I’m glad that I was right.

And then there were the ones who didn’t make it. I only want to talk about one of them. And thy name is Kez Ban.

 Instead of walking the earth with shoes, they walk with words and measures. – Kez Ban

 

I wanted the original song to be like her audition song, Azure Sky, but it just wasn’t. I felt like it even sounded like a swan song of sorts. Even though Kez Ban didn’t make it, I still like her world view.What a great way to talk about song writing. That all being said, after seeing Big Crazy Barb and then Kez Ban, and then she gets the boot without a group coming out?

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Sad panda needs a hug. Or a job, apparently. I am glad that I got to experience a small part of what is Kez Ban. You were a fun person to watch while you lasted. And I liked your creativity.

Sorry Ashlee, Brianna, Sarina-Joi, Lauren Mink and those other nameless girls sent on their way.

As for the guys we had to see go, (Peter Garrett, Marvin Calderone, Devin Jones, Kenny Harrison, Will White, Tony Foster, David Leathers, Jr., and Adam Sanders) – Good bye sweet friends. I’ll miss Marvin, and Peter looks like a cute kid. David too, to some extent, but remember David, you didn’t get to the same spot as last season. Last season you made it to Hollywood. Sorry for your luck!

Couple of thoughts at the end of the episode

Ok, and can we all just agree we would’ve loved seeing an a show of just Big Crazy Barb and Kez Ban, shopping? I really think that could’ve been hilarious.

And, I watched this show this morning, not live, and I finished it in 30 minutes, and that’s not even including fast forwarding parts of the show, which I tend to do. How I watch this show live is beyond me? Thank god for chatting with friends at commercials or there’s no way!

And just a note about next week. And just so you know, I have some friends coming into town Thursday so I will probably be spending Wednesday frantically cleaning my house and Thursday, entertaining, but I’ll still try to post on time. Just no promises! Friends first, friends.

Categories: American Idol, Television | Leave a comment

Ladies of Hollywood

Well, we’ve come back once more to celebrate all that is Group Night.

groupnight

Here are some things that tonights episode taught me, er, emphasized for me.

1. American Idol really wants a female winner this season (thank you Ryan Seacrest for shoving that in our faces – I’ve wanted a female winner since Haley Reinhart was on the show)*

2. Girls are more dramatic (ok maybe we already knew that)

3. It’s a bad idea to write lyrics on your hand.

4. Headbands are really big this season (I feel like there was a token headband girl in EVERY GROUP!)

* For emphasizing how much you WANT a girl winner this season, and how ah-mah-zing the girls are this season, I really only saw maybe 3 girls that I’d write home write in this blog about. Their names are Angela Miller, Rachel Hale and Brandy Hotard (and I suppose Candace Glover and Janelle Arthur since they’re clearly front runners). Ok well that is about 5 more than the guys, so maybe the Idol gods are onto something. They could certainly have the next Taylor Swift Carrie Underwood on their hands. Janelle even almost seems like a little mix of Kelly and Carrie, vocally.

The Firing Squad

Ok so for saying you had a lot of people to cut, I really didn’t see that. I mean, we saw you cutting people but didn’t really get any names and I’m terrible at remembering faces. Or maybe I’m too good since I feel like half the people I see remind me of somebody.

Safely making it through (and into my heart) are

Angela Miller (where have you been all my life?)
Victoria Acosta
Rachel Hale (Taylor Swift Sweetness – told you they were looking for a Taylor!)
Jenell Arthur (double-swoon. Lonesome whimper indeed)
Candice Glover
Isabelle (formerly Christine on the auditions, but still good in spite of the name change)
Ashley Feliciano
Melinda Ademi (she’s been on before – grouped with Thia Megia in Season 10)
Brianna Oakley
and Kez Ban.

My dear Kez Ban, as much as I truly enjoyed all the cheering you did for your fellow contestants, and your stellar audition in Chicago, I’m sorry to say I was not happy to see you go through on that performance, or your group performance. You just didn’t bring it. I guess maybe the judges see something in you that I’m missing, but… I’m missing it.

Not making it through were Megan Miller, Mariah Pulice, Ashley Smith (Blondie!! No!!), Ann Difani and Sarah “Super Bass” Restuccio.

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And with that, it was group night. Can I just take a moment – Randy is tied up in the studio? Randy has another job? Sorry if I don’t believe that one! #sorrynotsorry I’ll just be thankful for some time without Randy (I’d hoped).

swaggettes

The Swagettes – Hit Em’ Up Style
Candice Glover, Kamaria Ousley, Melinda Ademi and Denise Jackson

If it was difficult for you to determine who won the night, um… yeah. Great song choice, great performance. I think this sums up my feelings towards the Swaggettes

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As Mariah said “Swag On”. If this were X-Factor I’d demand they make you a group, and then I’d demand they release a CD, IMMEDIATELY.

raisin cain

Raisin’ Cain – Sin Wagon
Morgan Leigh Boberg, Lauren Mink, Brandy Hotard, and Girl #4

As good, in a completely different way, from the Swaggettes. I also have to say that I thought Brandy Hotard stood out as the CLEAR best in this group (she even stands out in the picture). Had they only kept her I would’ve been totally fine, but I’m ok with them keeping all four ladies. They deserved it.

I also wanted to mention a group that didn’t get a name, instead a mere snippet, but it featured Shubha Vedula, Sarina-Joi Crowe, and some girl named Aubrey. Great little group. Super happy Shubha is doing well!

And that was it time for the not so great groups…

The Dramatics – If I Die Young
Kriss Mincey, Janel Stinney, Cristabel Clack, and Girl #4

I don’t know how you all made it through because I thought this performance was close to awful. I’m only mentioning your group so high up in the review because I still think Cristabel Clack is worthy of a shout out. I really like your voice and your style, and your ability to even tolerate Janel without punching her in the face. Those crocodile tears… so over it. Did anyone notice that even Mariah eye-rolled Janel? That’s saying something. I was questioning why Nicki would praise her so highly but then I saw this tweet on her page and I feel like it all made sense…

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Urban Hue – American Boy
Seretha Guinn, Tenna Torres, Kiara Lanier, and Girl #4

The only thing I wrote about this group was that I liked the tiny Asian girl.

The Dolly Chicks – Sin Wagon
Britnee Kellogg, Kree Harrison, Brandy Neelly, Haley Davis

Minus a one Haley Davis, I actually thought this group was really good, and it was nice to see Britnee Kellogg from last season. She was the one who gave up on her dream so she could support her douche husband and his basketball career.  The thing I hated about this group and was SHOCKED to see, was when Brandy Neelly was the one who went home and not the person of Nicki’s aggression – Haley Davis! A million times GRR! But speaking of people who suck/write lyrics on their hands, I thought I’d just gloss over all the horrible versions of Somebody That I Used to Know (was this the only crossover song from the boys group song choices?) Let’s get all the versions of this song out in one fell swoop shall we?

Somebody

Almost Famous – Savannah Votion, Lizz Weiss, Daysia Hall and J’Leigh Chauvin – I wasn’t as mad as Savannah that she got cut, but only because I thought the whole group should have been given the boot. And that comment can go for just about everyone that sang this song tonight, with a few exceptions.

Handsome Women – Shira Gavrielov, Alisha Dixon, Liz Bills, Courtney Calle – And as for Handsome Women, I was completely with the judges, writing that I thought only “the shoeless girl was worth keeping” – Kelly, FTW! And seriously Shira, I’m offended with myself for wishing you a top spot. God you and your high bun were obnoxious. No one in this show thinks you’re any sort of big deal for being a one hit wonder in Israel. Sorry for your luck.

For You –  Stephanie Schimel, Alex Delaney, Kalli Therinae, Holly Miller – I was with Stephanie, I don’t know how the judges kept you either. was Total Eclipse of the Heart THAT terrible of a song to perform? I also hate you all because you forced me to agree with RANDY! UGGHH

And for everyone that had the lyrics to this song written on your hands whose names may not have appeared but most likely got the boot – Take it from Nicki, DON’T WRITE LYRICS ON YOUR HANDS! BE PROFESSIONAL!

Ok, now to talk about the 2 groups that got twitter up in a huff!

First, lets talk about Big Crazy Barb (Zoanette Johnson – sorry I called you Zoanetta all last week. I’m calling you Big Crazy Barb from this point forward anyway), and her group, the Pooh Snaps. I’m not sure if it was my favorite group name of the night… Ok, it was. But people were more concerned with Big Crazy Barb than the rest of the Pooh Snaps (Erin Christine, Lauren Bettes, Isabelle).

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I’m not going to claim that Big Crazy Barb is a good singer. Certainly not the best of the night, but is nothing if not entertaining, which I genuinely believe is the only reason she’s still on the show. I know, I wouldn’t have pegged her to go through Group Night in a million years but seeing who they were letting through and who they weren’t, I can’t say this move completely surprised me. One thing I was happily surprised to see was a little breakout from Erin Christine! Me likey!

The other person twitter was a-buzz for, the one and only KezBan! Like or hate her, people were talking about her. She was the only Idol related thing, trending on twitter last night! Also, for the record, the trending topic of #CandyHeartRejects is hilarious.

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And I must say, it looks like she has quite the following (and yes, I am not following this person on twitter, if you’re interested, you can too)

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The Misfits (one of the most apropos names of the night) – Be My Baby (Guess Kez Ban didn’t fight to the death after all)
Kez Ban, Breanna Steer, Angela Miller, Janelle Arthur

Seeing them all talking prior to their performance, I kept thinking this group would be terrible, ignoring the fact that they had Angela and Janell as contestants. Boy was I wrong. Terrible performance, kind of. But terrible voices, no. Definitely not. Angela Miller and Janelle Arthur proved that they are shining stars! They’re definitely two of my top favorites of the night. Kez Ban, not so much, but I’m holding out hope for you, you crazy whack-a-doo!

And that’s that! We move onto tonight. Which might not be posted right away depending on whether or not my hubs has Valentine’s Day plans for us. Time will tell 😉

Categories: American Idol, Television | Leave a comment

Pork and Pineapple Enchiladas

Hi folks!

It’s been a while since I posted a recipe up here but my dinner tonight was just too good not to share! Really easy too which is ALWAYS a plus! I always like doing leftovers a completely different way. It makes the pain of eating leftovers that much less. And let me tell you, we had a hell of a lot of leftovers.

Yesterday we made some pork bbq using the nectar of the gods…

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Yes, that’s Mermaid BBQ, but this is their Pineapple Teriyaki, which we’ve only used once before. I was excited to try it with something else (the first time we made it with chicken on the grill).  It’s so freaking good. Like most of their sauces! And I only say most because I’ve only tried 2 (and their rub) but they have more that I need to get to trying!

So back to the leftovers. I had made some pulled pork sammies but as we were eating them my husband had mentioned that he wasn’t sure what I was planning to do with the pork. I asked him what he meant and he was all, “Well, I dunno, I was thinking you might do like, tacos or something.” Interesting. I hadn’t thought of doing anything but sandwiches but as soon as he said it I got to thinking about it… and I’m glad he mentioned it because they were delicious.

Ingredients

3-4 cups of pork bbq*
1/2 bottle of Mermaid BBQ Pineapple Teriyaki sauce (you’ll be using another bottle and a half if you make the pork)
1/2 bag of mixed sliced peppers (or 2 fresh peppers, sliced/diced)
1/2 bag of diced onion (or 1/2 of a large onion, diced)
1 large can of crushed pineapple
2 cups of cheddar cheese
1 package of 10″ tortillas, any variety you like.

*If you’re making the pulled pork, you’ll need about a 5lb pork shoulder, 2 onions (rough chopped), and 2 jars of Mermaid Pineapple Teriyaki BBQ sauce (which we cooked in 1.5 bottles of the BBQ sauce, in our slow cooker for about 8 hours – it had been a 6 lb pork shoulder).  

So, as for how the process works, it’s pretty simple.

First you want to pre-heat your oven to 350. While that’s heating up, you’re going to re-heat your pork to a warmer non-fridge temp (if you’re not using fresh pork bbq) so that you’re not putting it into the enchiladas cold (1 minute in the microwave should be enough). Then you want to saute the peppers and onions in a pan until the onions are translucent, it should take about 8 minutes or so.

 

You then want to lay out your tortillas next to your pan of pepper/onion mixture, your opened can of pineapple and your pork, so as to have a nice little assembly line. Fill each tortilla in this order – 2 heaping tablespoons of the mixed pepper/onion mixture,  1/2 – 3/4 cup of pork, and 2 heaping tablespoons of the crushed pineapple. It’ll look a little something like this:

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The fold the tortilla up, and lay them into the pan. Then you want to top the closed tortillas with the 1/2 bottle of BBQ sauce. A few heaping tablespoons of pineapple spread out evenly (about this much – see below)

 

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Then you want to finish it off with your cheese, and put it into the oven for about 20 minutes. When everything is said and done you’ll have something that looks like this:

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See all that delicious crispy cheese on the side? I like to finish it off with the low broiler for like, 3 minutes, but watch it so it doesn’t burn because boilers are a tricky mistress! But, a nice crispy top cheese layer is worth the risk!

I served it with some rice and refried beans and it was sooo yummy! The pineapple was such a delicious addition to the enchiladas and made them really refreshing but at the same time it was very filling. I couldn’t even finish my whole enchilada…. ok I did, but it took me a few breaks.

I hope you like them!

 

Categories: Recipes, Sunday Dinner | Leave a comment

American Idol – Hollywood Men, Take II

Here’s the thing with this group of guys, and a lot of recappers have said this (and I for one completely agree) – The reason it seems, that the guys have been separated from the girls this season for Hollywood is to pit the world against the men and get a WOMAN as America’s Idol this year. I was hoping that was the reasoning. And after watching tonight, I realize there must be a few we still haven’t seen yet, but no one except maybe Lazaro (and I have my doubts about him for other reasons) really stood out as a possibility. By the end of Hollywood last year I already had a lady boner for Phillip Phillips and while I have like, a minor lady boner for a few of the contestants from last night (I’m looking at you Mathenee and Nick, ok and you too Cortez), I still remember ladies that I liked more than all of them. That being said, we all know that time will tell! And most of the voters are cute little girls. Luckily, I think we have a few of the Taylor Swift types that could get those girls voting for them.

Now as for tonight, just a few things before we start with the episode. I feel like I’m about to fight with half of twitter for a multitude of reasons.

First and foremost, the Turbinator is NOT a terrorist. Sikhism is NOT synonymous with terrorism, and neither is wearing a turban. For all you idiots saying that “This is AMERICAN Idol, not Terrorist Idol” – go eat a dick. Not to mention this guy is from Potomac, MD. I realize no one that follows ME on twitter thinks this, but I can’t respond to all the idiots who say that, so I’m just going to say it here and be done with it.

Secondly. for all the Nicki Minaj haters on twitter, ok yes, her voice is terrible. I get that. And the British accent is weird. I’m just not drinking the Nicki Minaj haterade. Michael Slezak took a little time at the beginning of his article this morning to talk about Nicki and I completely agree with his statements –

slezak

That all being said – What in the HELL was that outfit last night? You all know that Randy is usually the butt of most of my fashion jokes (and I still think some of his outfit choices will always be my least favorite) but her outfit  looked like she’s hiding from the FBI. It’s like if RuPaul made her own groucho marx costume for an 80s party. Does that make sense? It makes sense in my head.

I love you Robin Sparkles!

Not bad huh? I think it’s a pretty good guess, if nothing else. I know it’s weird to say that this was the worst of all her fashion faux pas (especially after her “robes” from the Grammy’s last year) but this was most definitely one of the ugliest. At least it wasn’t a meat dress, I guess.

Ok that’s all for now. Oh wait, and this made me laugh. It’s true. I mean, it’s really a travesty that it’s on at the same time as Parks and Rec.

truth

Ok that’s all my random thoughts. Ok no it’s not. This also made me giggle.

Hey there Griffin Peterson!

I promise, I’m done. At least until I’m done writing about the contestants. Let’s talk about the performances!

Paul Jolley – Blown Away – And for such a song title, Blown Away I was not. His voice was fine but honestly – no one cares what you have to say. At least not now. Maybe Vegas week. Nicki is right. It’s a turn off. Give us professionalism. I liked what MJsBigBlog said – “Fake it til you make it, kids!”

Lazaro Arbos – Edge of Glory – Ok that jacket needs to go like, yesterday Laz (who I’ve also dubbed Balki), but I do love you. This is not Miami Vice. I could’ve said the same for Paul but Lazaro really brought it to the forefront.

Finchy – Jar of Hearts – This was my second favorite performance of Jar of Hearts, of the evening. (sidenote  – really, 3 people sang Jar of Hearts? There weren’t THAT many people – how many songs do you have to pick from and 3 people pick this song?) Ok back to Finchy. I don’t think his goal is to reach people. After seeing him yesterday in groups, I think his goal is just to make money, he just fits into the “Church” group so that’s where he’s coming from. I’m sorry but people who say they’re all about Jesus, and then saying he hopes his competition just goes home because they’re sick? Sorry, you have a good voice but your attitude is a little on the toxic side. I’m sure the judges don’t see that though, not yet. The public does though – and we’re who will be voting for you. Just remember that Finchy.

Devin Valez – What a Wonderful World – We saw him for the first time in terrible group night. I like him, I could see him making it to Vegas, but not the big show. He’s not really Hollywood to me. He’s not like, the IT guy. He looks more like the I.T. guy.

Turbinator – Georgia On My Mind – I liked him a lot, you know anyone playing an instrument I’m going to like more, automatically.

Cortez Shaw – Sunny – Decent. Least favorite of his performances I’ve seen so far. But that doesn’t take anything away from how much I liked some of his previous performances so we won’t discuss this one.

Matheus Fernandes – Stronger – I hate when they talk first. You’re not getting an inch more of sympathy from me (not that you got any from me to begin with). He was absolutely NOT Kelly Clarkson and his take on this song was just… blech.   With some extra –ech. Anyone note the lyric “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, stand a little taller”… haha. Nicki, wise sage that she is, reminded Matheus that sometimes bringing up your disadvantages, becomes wanting a pity party. She’s so right. So freaking right. Love her.  And why was douche saying he never performed with a live band. Hi, remember that show TGP you were on? The one that was also on TV, that ALSO had a live band? Yeah, that one… Asshole.

Not shown singing, Adam Sanders is also safe

Nicholas Mathis – Locked Out of Heaven – Big Boy has a name!! Unfortunately he was just ok, and then a bit of a trainwreck when he got voted off. He was so good in groups but he was really just ok tonight. I guess that’s why we only just learned his name today… Did anyone else think he was about to have a heart attack when he dropped down? Minus your slightly unprofessional breakdown, I still liked him. Maybe we’ll see him again one day.

Papa Peachez – You and I – That flame is now completely burned out. And also, this…

peachez

Jimmy Smith – Landslide – Listening to him I was just thinking, this entire group is going home. I was 2/3 right.

Not shown, Johnny Keyser and Vincent Powell are also through. I swear Johnny Keyser is like an STD on American Idol. He just won’t go the f- away!

Nick Boddington – Stars – Piano Man! Holla!! I don’t know your song but I like it. Nailed it Nick! You totally have that confidence that soooo many other guys are lacking! Way to go boy.

Charlie Askew – Somebody That I Used to Know – Charlie, m’boy! What’s with these bad suits/jackets people are wearing? Are jeans not apropos? Not important though. At least you’re quirky enough to pull off an ill-fitting shiny suit. And Charlie, I loved it. Everything about you. Excellent song choice, excellent non-pathetic intro. I feel like he’s gaining confidence and I freaking LOVE IT. “I glorify weirdness” – yeah you do pal! I thought I’d throw in some twitter love for you too.

charlie01

Not shown, JDA and Mathenee Treco are also through! Yey for Mathenee!  Oh, and in case I haven’t forced you to watch this – it’s my all time favorite performance of “Somebody That I Used to Know”

Burnell Taylor – Jar of Hearts – Beautiful. Beautiful. (and some other guy who also sang Jar of Hearts makes it through – Marvin Calderon? I think that’s right)

Micah Johnson – I Told You So – This is just EPIC sad face. EPIC. My initial thoughts of his performance were – Hello there panty melter. I just don’t understand how he could get cut. So much screen time, so many good performances. It just didn’t make any sense. The only thing that gives me hope is his attitude after being cut, so sweet! Just like Kayden from yesterday. But seriously, what the freaking hell? Micah, we’ll miss you! So very much! I hope they didn’t cut you so that you wouldn’t take away Lazaros sympathy vote.

Also gone that we didn’t see were Gabe Brown (who definitely made it further than I thought he would), Sunni (mini-sad face), and Nate Tao (almost as bad as Micah sad face).

I just can’t believe they cut Micah, and then Nate without even showing his performance. My jaw literally DROPPED! And that NEVER happens. Too bad, so sad. But really, so sad!! Boo!!

Finally, as I’ve been writing these blogs I find more and more people that I love to follow on twitter for their live play-by-play opinions of each episode. I’m not the play-by-play type person, though I do write down my opinions for later, I love seeing other peoples opinions and seeing if they match mine. Yesterday, I told you that you should be following Melinda Doolittle, if you are on twitter. Now, I’m obsessed with Greg Bennett. Those familiar with the RHONJ might be familiar with Greg as he is roomies and BFFs with Caroline Manzo’s sons. Anyway, he’s awesome to follow on twitter. Exhibit A:

greggy

Categories: American Idol, Television | Leave a comment

American Idol – Hollywood Boys and Group Night

begin

I knew there was a reason I liked Keith!

Ok so tonight began my most favorite part of the entire American Idol season – Group Night! It’s a beautiful thing. Full of tears, drama, wrong lyrics. Michael Slezak’s article for this morning was “Boys of Bummer” and boy was it! Just bad performance after bad performance, peppered with breathtaking wonderful performances, few and far between. But first lets talk about the pre-group night events!

The Line-Up

So first we had contestants lining up 10 at a time to sing for the judges. I’m also a fan of this random fire form of judging. I was furiously searching the groups to see which of my favorites were in the rows, and which people I may remember from previous seasons, making their way to the stage. It’s also the first chance to hear a few new folks that we haven’t heard to date.

This post would be a mile long (and really it’s going to be anyway) if I had to recap every single performance so instead, here’s a list of the ones who made it and the ones who didn’t, that I saw. I certainly may’ve missed a few!

Through to Groups

Heading Home

Micah Johnson

Curtis “Finchy” Finch, Jr.

Lazaro Arbos*

Gupreet “Turbinator” Singh Sarin

Gabe Brown

Nate Tao

Frankie Ford

People we didn’t see in Auditions
but made it through:

Mathenee Treco (from last season)*

Cortez Shaw (really liked him last season)

Trevor Blakney

Bryant Tradeo

Charles Allen

Some guy named Devin, and Peter (last names unknown. Not a good sign)

Karl Skinner (too much Coke?)**

Brian Rittenberry

Dr. Calvin

Dustin Watts

*Favorite Performances
** I actually liked his performance more here, than his Audition

I felt like this was a bit of foreshadowing. Lots of people through, minimal list of people going home. Allegedly they cut half the guys. I’ll have to take their word for it.

Group Night

There were so many things I liked about this seasons first round of group nights.

1. I didn’t see anyone faint, puke, fall off a stage, etc!
2. The fighting was really minimal compared to last year (although I have a feeling the girls next week will remedy that. We of the female sex have that tendency).
3. They kept a lot of my favorites (almost everyone in my Top 10 guys list that they showed, were through to the next round)
4. The new rules – Boys and Girls performing separately, you can’t form your own group and you can’t change your group. Let’s talk about this for a second shall we?

I think this is a GREAT change! I don’t really remember people changing groups but I like the producers picking groups. I realize the producers may be doing this for selfish ratings reasons but I really like the idea because then no one is just running around crying about having no friends and no group. That being said, I feared for whoever was in the group with Papa Peachez! Who would’ve thought he would be safe and Frankie Ford (the Subway Singer) would go home? Certainly not me. But I’m glad Nicki at least gave him that talking to, to make sure he takes the competition more seriously.

Ok so lets get to Groups! Let’s talk about some of the best, first. I feel like as long as you remembered all your lyrics, I put you in the “BEST” category. Low bar as it was, I did think that the people who did well, did REALLY well!

The Four Tones – Hold On, I’m Coming
Micah Johnson Vincent Powell, David Willis, Marvin Calderon

Obviously I wanted Micah and Vincent to go through, but I actually really liked Marvin and David as well. I’m glad they all made it through.

The Math Heads – Somebody to Love
Nick Boddington, Matheus Fernandes, Gabe Brown, Mathenee Trecco

This group had 2 people from last season (Nick and Mathenee) and two from the auditions. While I would’ve preferred Matheus not make the next round, I was happy with the other 3. I really like Nick and Mathenee. I don’t really remember Nick from last season but upon a quick blog search I found that both Nick and Mathenee were victims of Group Night so it’s nice to see them go through, and have performed so well.

DKSK – The Longest Time
 David Leathers Jr., Sanni M’Mairura, Kayden Stephenson, Kevin Quinn

Ok so you may remember David Leathers, Jr. He was the one constantly reminding everyone last season in Vegas (and his audition) that he once beat Scotty McCreery in a singing competition. I really liked him and was floored/pissed when stupid Eban Frankewitz (sp?) got his spot in the top. It should’ve been David! That being said, I’m kind of over him. More importantly though can I just say that I was so happy with how Kayden took the news of being eliminated? What a gracious kid. He realized he wasn’t ready, still wants to try again – you kid, have a great head on your shoulders. I’m sure I’ll be seeing you on Ellens couch shortly! And congratulations to my African favorite Sanni! Did I just put them in with the best because I think they’re all adorable? It’s possible.

Coach Potatoes – Lazy Song
Charlie Askew, Curtis Finch Jr., and another guy whose name I really wanna know but can’t find anywhere! Why!!

Great song, great twist as to how they sang it with that gospel twist. I can’t even stand how much I like Charlie. Singing to birds? And his partner who hates him is named Finch? Ironic? Is that irony? I wanted to hate Finchy for wanting Charlie off but I do get it. I did laugh at his American Airlines comment (see below), and he sang well enough that even I wanted to put up a church hand. Could be my favorite of the night? Quite possibly. I just wanna know – Who is the 3rd guy? Why doesn’t he get a name?

Young Love – Some Kind of Wonderful
Zach Birnbaugh, Nate Tao, Cortez Shaw, Elijah Liu

Definitely my favorites of the evening. Nate Tao is growing on me with each new song I hear him sing, and Cortez Shaw I’ve liked since before he was voted off last season! And as for the other two, they certainly held their own among 2 of my already named favorites, so good for you! If any group could’ve been a boy band, it was this one!

And speaking of boy bands, who else noticed how many of the terrible contestants sang that One Direction song? Twitter certainly noticed!

WMYB

 Last Minute – You Don’t Know You’re Beautiful
Jason Jones, Dan Wood, Jessie Lawrence

This was the first group to sing WMYB. Well, the first one that we saw actually getting judged and not just completely eliminated with a voiceover. I spent a lot of their audition laughing at One Direction fans on twitter screaming through their accounts at how awful they were. It was pretty funny. That’s where most of the above quotes come from. Also, I never saw it on twitter but one of my favorite quotes of the night, and from this group was when Keith (the resident One-Liner) said “If the word ‘wrongest’ can be used, this was the wrongest song for you guys.” They all went home (and just an editors note – if the name is crossed out, they went home – in case I don’t mention that in future parts of the post)

And if it wasn’t a One Direction song the groups were butchering, it was some other lyrics. Trust, twitter noticed that as well.

wronglyrics

That last girl was screaming what I was screaming. One Direction certainly isn’t in my rotation of songs (almost shocking, I realize) but I’m alive and I listen to music, so I know most of the lyrics to the song. But maybe wise sage, Melinda Doolittle knows more than we do. She’s been there/done that. And lest we forget, I did a little google search to realized that Scotty McCreery and Hailey Reinhart both scewed up lyrics in Hollywood week and still made it through!

Also, I’ll just mention now that the judges (and one contestant) had some amazing one liners tonight regarding the terribles tonight! I’ll throw them out here in a little twitter smattering so as to get them out in one fell swoop.

Quotesofthenight

Mariah noticeably absent from the “hilarious quotes” montage. She felt noticeably absent throughout the episode, if I must say. I just feel like Idol doesn’t even need her. Nicki is everything. Although I would take her over Randy ANY DAY.

Ok back to terrible contestants.

Super 55 – Wouldn’t it Be Nice
Lazaro ArbosChristian Lopez, Scott Fleenor, Josh Stevens

Ok we’re going to talk about this group first because while the group was most definitely terrible, how can ANY GROUP with Lazaro be terrible? Josh Stephens (bad), Scott Fleenor (super bad), Christian Lopez (meh). I think the judges made the right decision, and I only put Lazaro in with the terribles because his group WAS terrible, but he’s a shining beacon of light and I love him. Josh – you didn’t lose because you spent all your time helping Lazaro, he was in before he even opened his mouth. You were just bad. Jealousy isn’t a pretty look on you, sir.

B-Side – Pay Phone
The Turbinator, Mark LaDuke (regae turbinator) and two other guys.

Ok I may be in the minority here, but if nothing else I’m really glad that the Turbinator made it through to the next round. I know he’s a little gimmicky and he’s no Heejun Han, but I can’t deny that I still really like him. I really liked his solo round earlier in the night and thought it was even better than his original audition. And he’s from Potomac, so what’s not to like about him? As for the rest, I don’t really care. It was nice knowing you. And Nicki, I’m somewhat amazed by your powers of persuasion. You seem to get everyone you want, through. I think it’s because the producers know that you know what a good show is. And they’re right.

A capella Group – Pay Phone
Ryan Connor Smith, Devan Jones, Devin Velez, Random 4th Guy

How did we get two Devi/ans? If there could be a worse version of Pay Phone, this was it. Shocking that only 1 got sent home, but better than all of them getting through, I s’pose.

Normal Hills – I’ll Be There
Johnny Keyser, Kareem Clark, and some other people.

Johnnys entire performance made me want to throw up. The fact that they kept him was just insulting to all the other people who were sent home before him, in my opinion. He forgets the words, it was your own fault because you picked the song and your face isn’t pretty… Kareem Clark was flatter than a pancake. I did think it was really funny that Keith called out Johnny for never hearing that song before, “What planet are you from? I’m from Australia and I know that song”. But Keith, you didn’t know Baby It’s Cold Outside? Ok ok, maybe it’s slightly less popular of a song… fine. I still love you. And I still hate Johnny.  I don’t know who those other two guys were… I guess maybe we’ll figure that out at a later date.

The Taylors – Don’t You Wanna Stay (I’d never heard this song but I checked it out on YouTube and I really like it, all 7 lyrics)
Paul Jolley, Will White, and some other people

I don’t know if you’re noticing a trend, but clearly if I’m including “and some other people” in your group name, there’s not a good chance you’re living to see another round of competition. What’s funny about this group, is that as much as people will say they’re so great, or how they could never mess up because there are only a few lyrics… yeah, about that… Take it from the girl who got voted off first on Project Runway this year (yes, I still watch it. Don’t hate), you’re probably not making it through to another round. I was surprised (really surprised) that even 2 got to stay (but I’d be more surprised later on). Congratulations Paul and Will.

Mo Flo – Some Kind of Wonderful
Burnell Taylor, Tony Foster, Jr. Mario Jose, Darien Moses

Ok so, Young Love, this group was not. If I could’ve kept two it would’ve been Darien and Tony so I was surprised when I was only half right, but Burnell wasn’t the worst so I’m ok with how it all went down.

Country Queen – More Than Words
Lee Prichard, JDA, Joel Wayman, Trevor Blakney

Ok this group got entirely too much attention in the non-performance part of the show. I knew they were going to suck, they did kind of suck, end of story. Trevor, you’ve never failed at anything? Really? I could name a few things just by looking at you. Long story short, you will not be missed.

Oz – American Boy
Frankie Ford, Adam Sanders, Papa Peachez, Charles Allen

I was over this group about 5 minutes after Frankie started having his little hissy fit/breakdown. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a Papa Peachez fan and the other two weren’t anyone I cared about. Then they sang and suddenly I was really into Charles Allen. I thought it was funny/sad that Keith fought for Frankie and he went home, while Nicki fought for Papa and he stayed (after a stern talking to).

Ok so I know this is bordering on OBSCENELY LONG, but I have 2 more things I’d like to share with you.

  1. Did you ever notice that Randy has a wonky eye? Thanks twitter! I don’t really love to point out physical ailments, but I’ve said enough bad thing about Randy, this really isn’t even close to the worst. And I’m merely pointing out something that was pointed out to me.BCd7ZGlCMAAj8kR.jpg-large
  2. Can anyone answer this for me?need2know
  3. You need to be following Melinda Doolittle on Twitter (and if you watch Scandal, you need to follow Joshua Malina).

Ok everyone, that only took all day to write! Hope you enjoy. Talk to you all soon 🙂

Categories: American Idol, Television | Leave a comment

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